The Nanaimo Musicians’ Association Big Band, seen here opening the inaugural Nanaimo Jazz Festival at Diana Krall Plaza in September, is performing at a fundraiser concert at Malaspina Theatre on Wednesday, Nov. 15. (Josef Jacobson/The News Bulletin)

VIU bands raise money for music students

NMA Big Band and Decadence join together for fundraiser concert at Malaspina Theatre

Two Vancouver Island University affiliated bands are coming together to raise money for music students.

The Nanaimo Musicians’ Association (NMA) Big Band, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, and Decadence are performing at VIU’s Malaspina Theatre on Wednesday, Nov. 15. The concert, called Lessons in Cool, is a fundraiser with proceeds going towards scholarships for music students. Attendees are asked to give what they can.

“We don’t have a number in mind,” said Bryan Stovell, NMA Big Band director and former chair of the VIU music department, referring to fundraising targets.

“We give what we can to help the kids out.”

He says in the past the NMA Big Band would hand out six $500 scholarships annually, but that sum has varied over the years based on how much revenue the band’s charity concerts can generate. Stovell said the band has been supporting music students for decades.

“We’ve all been around here a long time and raising money for kids’ scholarships,” he said.

“I started [the NMA Big Band] 50 years ago, so we’ve raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for scholarships.”

Stovell said he and Decadence director Steve Jones, another former VIU professor, are choosing music students as the recipients of their charity because they both have had long careers in education.

“I was a high school band teacher here forever,” Stovell said.

“I taught most of the musicians who went through school bands and Steve Jones has been teaching at the VIU music department for probably about 30 years. So we’ve all had a big connection with students and a big interest in their well being.”

Stovell said most of the bands’ members are VIU graduates, some of them as far back as the ’80s. He said a lot of them can be seen playing in bands around Nanaimo.

“There’s bands around town that go out and do corporate things. That’s where they make money because we don’t pay them anything they just donate their time for whatever scholarships we can get,” he said.

“Almost all of them are involved in other groups that are more lucrative for them. But they can’t get any money from a big band anymore. You used to, but you can’t get much money for 18 members of a band… They’re doing it for the love of it and for the good it can do.”

WHAT’S ON … The VIU Music Department presents A Big Band Concert: Lessons in Cool with Decadence and the NMA Big Band on Wednesday, Nov. 15 at 7:30 p.m. at VIU’s Malaspina Theatre. Admission by donation.



arts@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Tilray to export cannabis formulation to U.S. for clinical trial

Marijuana remains illegal in most of the U.S.

District of Lantzville adopts new logo

Logo features sea glass in shape of wave and the slogan ‘Love life here’

Attorney general takes Nanaimo councillor to court over release of confidential documents

Coun. Gord Fuller and three other Nanaimo citizens named in Supreme Court petition

Council reverses past practice, will broadcast meetings during election campaign

Nanaimo city council votes 5-4 to continue with broadcasts

Close to $10,000 worth of tools taken from construction site in Nanaimo

Theft happened overnight Sept. 12-13 on Old Slope Place

Local violinist Ray Chin performs at the Nanaimo Arts Council

Concert to feature a varied selection of compositions

Candidate lists finalized for Nanaimo, Lantzville, RDN, school district

Nomination deadline passes in advance of Oct. 20 local government elections

Porsche and Subaru dealerships can proceed with planning in north Nanaimo

City council unanimously allows rezoning application process to move forward

Food bank collects fixings for Thanksgiving dinners

Loaves and Fishes Community Food Bank held its Thanksgiving Food Drive on Saturday in Nanaimo

B.C. home to 1/3 of Canada’s overdose deaths in first 3 months of the year

There were 1,036 overdose deaths in the first three months of the year, with 94 per cent accidental

Canadian tobacco exec pushes back against vaping health concerns

A warning from Interior Health about the unknown health risks of vaping is getting a partial rebuke

Ministry of Agriculture commits $300,000 to help B.C. farmers obtain land

B.C. Land Matching Program supports access to affordable farmland for young farmers

Canadian air force short 275 pilots

Attrition outpaces recruitment and training claims Air Force

Teacher suspended after physically shushing, saying ‘shut up’ to student

Grade 5 student reported feeling ‘confused and a little scared’

Most Read